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Megachurches and Social Engagement

Public Theology in Practice

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Mark J. Cartledge, Sarah Dunlop, Heather Buckingham and Sarah Bremner

This book is the first detailed academic study of megachurches in the UK. In particular, it explores the nature and significance of social engagement by megachurches in the context of London. The research contains empirical case studies of two Anglican and three African diaspora Pentecostal churches. As well as exploring the range of social engagement activities provided by these churches, the study offers explanations in term of theological motivations and the influence of globalisation. Subsequently, the book outlines the importance of the findings for the relationship between church and society in the contemporary context, addressing the implications for social policy and practice. The book advances discussions in public theology, megachurch studies, Pentecostal and Charismatic studies and ecclesiology.
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Rudolf Schuessler

In The Debate on Probable Opinions in the Scholastic Tradition, Rudolf Schuessler portrays scholastic approaches to a qualified disagreement of opinions. The book outlines how scholastic regulations concerning the use of opinions changed in the early modern era, giving rise to an extensive debate on the moral and epistemological foundations of reasonable disagreements. The debate was fueled by probabilism and anti-probabilism in Catholic moral theology and thus also serves as a gateway to these doctrines. All developments are outlined in historical context, while special attention is paid to the evolution of scholastic notions of probability and their importance for the emergence of modern probability.
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Edited by Amy M. Austin and Mark D. Johnston

A Companion to Ramon Llull and Lullism offers a comprehensive survey of the work of the Majorcan lay theologian and philosopher Ramon Llull (1232-1316) and of its influence in late medieval, Renaissance, and early modern Europe, as well as in the Spanish colonies of the New World. Llull’s unique system of philosophy and theology, the “Great Universal Art,” was widely studied and admired from the fifteenth through the eighteenth centuries. His evangelizing ideals and methods inspired centuries of Christian missionaries. His many writings in Catalan, his native vernacular, remain major monuments in the literary history of Catalonia.

Contributors are: Roberta Albrecht, José Aragüés Aldaz, Linda Báez Rubí, Josep Batalla, Pamela Beattie, Henry Berlin, John Dagenais, Mary Franklin-Brown, Alexander Ibarz, Annemarie C. Mayer, Rafael Ramis Barceló, Josep E. Rubio, and Gregory B. Stone.
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The Spirit, Indigenous Peoples and Social Change

Māori and a Pentecostal Theology of Social Engagement

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Michael J. Frost

In The Spirit, Indigenous Peoples and Social Change Michael Frost explores a pentecostal theology of social engagement in relation to Māori in New Zealand. Pentecostalism has had an ambiguous relationship with Māori and, in particular, lacks a robust and coherent theological framework for engaging in issues of social concern. Drawing on a number of interviews with Māori pentecostal leaders and ministers, Frost explores the transformative role of pentecostal experience for Māori cultural identity, a holistic theology of mission, an indigenous prophetic emphasis, and consequent connections between pentecostalism and liberation. He thus contributes a way forward for pentecostal theologies of social change in relation to Māori, with implications for pentecostalism and indigenous peoples in the West.
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Vietnamese Evangelicals and Pentecostalism

The Politics of Divine Intervention

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Vince Le

This book offers an analysis of the historical, theological, and social conditions that give rise to the growth of pentecostalism among contemporary Vietnamese evangelicals. Emerging from the analysis is an understanding of how underprivileged evangelicals have utilized the pentecostal emphasis on divine intervention in their pursuit of the betterment of life amid religious and ethnic marginalization. Within the context of the global growth of pentecostalism, Vietnamese Evangelicals and Pentecostalism shows how people at the grassroots marry the deeply local-based meaning dictated by the particularity of living context and the profoundly universal truth claims made by a religion aspiring to reach all four corners of the earth to enhance life.
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Taking on Practical Theology

The Idolization of Context and the Hope of Community

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Courtney Goto

In Taking on Practical Theology, Courtney T. Goto explores the regnant paradigm that shapes knowledge production and that preserves power, privilege, and historic communal injury even as scholars intend to enlighten and transform communities.

Approaching “context” as a case study, Goto illumines how this commonly used, taken-for-granted concept is “idolized.” Though practical theologians are sensitive to context, researchers often fail to consider how their own assumptive world dictates and influences their practices of research, teaching, and engaging in scholarly conversations. These practices unwittingly validate scholars who enjoy the most social capital while inflicting harm on both communities they research and on colleagues and students who do not fit (or fit less well) the norms of the majority.
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Hughes Félicité Robert de Lammenais

Edited by Sylvain Milbach and Richard Lebrun

Lamennais: A Believer’s Revolutionary Politics, edited by Richard A Lebrun, offers English translations (by Lebrun and Jerry Ryan) of the most influential and controversial writings of Félicité de Lamennais, a French priest who began his career as a Traditionalist, became the founder of Liberal Catholicism in the early 1830s, and then left the Church after his ideas were condemned by Rome. Sylvain Milbach’s comprehensive Introduction and Annotations place these writings in the context of the author’s intellectual history and the political, religious, and intellectual situation in France in the first half of the 19th century.

Lamennais challenged traditional religious, political, and social thinking, leaving a fiercely debated reputation. The writings translated here allow 21st-century readers to judge him for themselves.
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Perspectives on Forgiveness

Contrasting Approaches to Concepts of Forgiveness and Revenge

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Edited by Susie DiVietro and Jordan Kiper

Demands for forgiveness, even in the face of horrific crimes, were common to the late twentieth century and remain critical aspirations for persons and communities in the early twenty-first century. Research on forgiveness and revenge has nevertheless revealed that many people hold divergent moral and pragmatic beliefs about forgiving, and most survivors express longstanding skepticism about when forgiveness is appropriate and when it is not. By taking an interdisciplinary approach to these issues, the current volume considers the complexities of forgiveness and revenge in the modern world. The chapters address some of the most critical inquiries today: How is forgiveness facilitated or obstructed? What is the role of truth, restitution, reparation or retribution? When is forgiveness without restitution appropriate? Is forgiveness in the true sense of the term even possible? Through empirical, theoretical and literary analyses, this volume addresses the power of revenge and forgiveness in human affairs and offers a unique outlook on the benefits of interdisciplinary discussions for enhancing forgiveness and deterring revenge in multiple aspects of human life.
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Maria-Cristina Pitassi and Daniela Solfaroli Camillocci

English Irena Backus' scholarship has been characterised by profound historical learning and philological acumen, extraordinary mastery of a wide range of languages, and broad-ranging interests. From the history of historiography to the story of Biblical exegesis and the reception of the Church Fathers, her research on the long sixteenth century stands as a point of reference for both historians of ideas and church historians alike. She also explored late medieval theology before turning her attention to the interplay of religion and philosophy in the seventeenth century, the focus of her late research. This volume assembles contributions from 35 international specialists that reflect the breadth of her interests and both illustrate and extend her path-breaking legacy as a scholar, teacher and colleague.

Français La recherche d’Irena Backus témoigne d’une culture historique et philologique étendue, de son impeccable maîtrise des instruments linguistiques et de la multiplicité de ses centres d’intérêt. Ses études sont aujourd’hui une référence essentielle pour les spécialistes de l’histoire intellectuelle, de l’histoire de l’exégèse biblique et de la réception des Pères de l’Eglise pendant le long XVIe siècle. Seiziémiste de formation, elle s’est également aventurée dans d’autres chronologies, en s’intéressant à l’Église de la fin du moyen âge et à la philosophie de ce XVIIe siècle qui l’a de plus en plus passionnée et qui constitue aujourd’hui son centre d’intérêt majeur. Ce recueil célèbre son long et original enseignement et ses grandes qualités de chercheuses et de collègue.
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Jubilee in the Bible

Using the Theology of Jürgen Moltmann to Find a New Hermeneutic

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Lidija Gunjević

The biblical message of Jubilee is becoming more credible in our days in dealing with the socio-economic and moral-spiritual issues of today’s world. It continues to exercise a powerful influence on the religious thoughts and actions of God’s people. In addition to that, this book reveals a new hermeneutical code of reading and interpreting the message of Jubilee. The synthesis of the exegetical analysis of the biblical texts regarding the Jubilee and Sabbath/Sabbath year and Moltmann’s understanding of this subject reveals the meaning and significance of the topic, how it is recognized, as well as its implications in today’s world. This synthesis reveals a new vision and starting point for socio-economic and moral-spiritual reform in our time.

“The biblical Sabbat / Jubilee-traditions are much richer than we thought. This book shows it. Theologically often neglected they are a source of new ideas to solve problems of human community and the ecology of the earth. That my theological works can be used to apply them today, is a surprise to me, a happy surprise.”
Jürgen Moltmann